Land-use issues are important to SEMCOG's regional planning efforts. SEMCOG’s land-use policy emphasizes preservation of the integrity of local plans and local decision-making. In supporting local government, SEMCOG monitors and evaluates select legislative land-use issues affecting Southeast Michigan and its local governments. SEMCOG also assists in developing land-use tools and techniques consistent with environmental protection. These efforts include managing growth and development and promoting revitalization of urban areas.

SEMCOG's 2008 land use data provides a general snapshot of land use in Southeast Michigan in the spring of 2008.  This land use data set is a departure from previous land use/land cover data sets SEMCOG has produced in that it portrays land use only and not land cover.  Due to this difference, change analysis using this data set and previous SEMCOG land use/land cover datasets is not possible.

Previously, SEMCOG's land use/land cover data sets were created through manual digitization of aerial photography.  Our 2008 land use data was originally created by assigning a land use code to every land parcel across the region.  Parcels were assigned land use codes based upon assessed property classes with some limited manual inspections against current aerial imagery.  Once a generalized land use class was assigned, a dissolve process was utilized to remove any and all resemblance of the individual parcels - and their attributes - that were originally used to create this data.  This dissolve process was based upon the generalized land use class and the individual community identification code of each parcel.

The availability of this data allows SEMCOG and other agencies to monitor changes in land use, analyze trends, and formulate plans for infrastructure designed to service residential areas and activity centers.

Developing Regional Solutions
SEMCOG is a regional planning partnership of governmental units serving 4.7 million people in the seven-county region of Southeast Michigan striving to enhance the region's quality of life.